ABOUT THE AUTHOR, BILL HIGGS
William (Bill) Higgs was born in Denver, Colorado, raised in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent 30 years in Texas before moving to Charlotte, North Carolina. He is a Son of the American Revolution (SAR), who places high value on family and community.
He is a Distinguished 1974 Graduate (top 5% academically) of the United States Military Academy at West Point and runner up for a Rhodes Scholarship. He lettered two years in soccer as the center fullback and was on the intercollegiate wrestling and judo teams. Bill was an Honor Graduate of the Army Ranger School and King of the Pits during the Vietnam era. After Airborne (parachute) and Atomic Demolitions courses, he commanded a Combat Engineering Company in the 1st Cavalry Division Airmobile. He was Honorably Discharged from the Army in 1979 as a Captain.
With two partners Bill started Mustang Engineering, Inc. in Houston, Texas in 1987 to design and build offshore oil platforms. Key responsibilities were sales, marketing and project management. Mustang qualified for two straight years as one of the “Inc. 500 Fastest Growing Companies in America” and was the top ranked engineering firm. Mustang won the “Innovate Houston” award for being the most “People” oriented company in Houston. This award confirmed the “People Oriented…Project Driven™” motto of Mustang and affirmed Bill’s passion for teambuilding and organizational development.
Mustang developed a brand known across the globe for delivering the toughest projects on time and on schedule…from Alaska to Argentina and the Gulf of Mexico to the west coast of Africa and in the North Sea. Mustang also helped change a significant part of the hydrocarbon industry from “win-lose” contracting to “win-win”. Mustang was on the cutting edge as the industry moved from shallow water fixed platforms to “floating cities” in 8,000 feet of water in the short span of 12 years. Although in a very tough and competitive market, Mustang was able to develop a unique culture that helped retain people and deliver top performance. Mustang established an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) in 1996, sold to the Wood Group in 2000 and turned management over to the 2ndgeneration leadership in 2006. Starting in 1993, Mustang expanded into refinery/petrochemical, pipelines, Automation and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) while establishing offices in eight countries. In 2008, Mustang delivered $1Bn in revenues and Bill retired with partner Paul Redmon as CEO and Founders.
Bill has helped his son develop the top rated steel bumper manufacturer Fab Fours in the Carolinas. He has helped his daughter start the bespoke clothing brand Cielo, nyc. He also oversees the Higgs Foundation, which supports a number of charities.
Bill is a Stage IV cancer survivor since 1980. He received the Distinguished Eagle (only 2,000 worldwide since inception in 1969) and Silver Beaver awards from the Boy Scouts of America for exceptional service. He also received the Engineering and Construction Contracting Association’s (ECC) 2004 Achievement Award in recognition of “Visionary Leadership in the Process Industry”. He and Paul were recognized as “Kings of Culture” as Mustang thrived.